Category Archives: Dr. Katharine Bushnell

How did I know I should write Daughters of Deliverance?

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How did I know I should write Daughters of Deliverance?

I was attending a conference — don’t remember what it was even about.  But I’ll never forget the conversation I had with my roommate one night..

“You’ve just got to write this woman’s story,” Mimi urged. “Katharine Bushnell has been lost to  history. She made a great contribution advocating for justice and equality for women, backed by years of study of the Bible and few people know about her.”

I laughed off Mimi’s suggestions. But the challenge had been planted in my mind.  I hadn’t acquiesced yet, but I wanted to know more about this women. When I began researching and reading about Katharine Bushnell, I couldn’t find personal  letters, or journals, or detailed accounts from people who had known her.

Discouraged, I made an  appointment with  a literary  agent  to ask his advice.  “Simple,” he said.  “Write it as historical fiction.” Voila! I could do that  I had all the facts of her life for the framework of the story — and fiction gave me the freedom to expand on that framework with how I think Kate would have acted.

Kate became so  real and alive, even my twenty-three-year-old grandson read the story and wrote: “Katharine is a fascinating character…It’s fascinating in part to see someone so determined to heal and fulfill her calling that she abandons the familiar.  It strikes of yearning for more, for both herself and people she serves”

Wow. Kate, as she has become to me, could even touch the heart of a young male adult. She was  was worth writing about. And your reading Daughters of Deliverance!

 

 

Bringing back the old

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Bringing back the old

This week I was reminded to promote other books I’ve written.  If you go to Lorry Lutz on Google, nine of my eleven published books are displayed.  It’s almost embarrassing to note that some sell for as little as 48cents!  Of course as far as books go, they’ve been around for a long time, and face hundreds of thousands  of other books which have been published since.

Three of my books are on Kindle — The Soweto Legacy, When God Says Go, and Daughters of Deliverance.  I have to admit, I like them all– but then I am prejudiced.

The Soweto Legacy was published in the 80s, but it deals with subjects as current as today.   Set in South Africa when apartheid reigned, it tells the story of a mixed-race couple (a no-no under apartheid) and how their two families handled the delicate situation. Race and ethnic hatred contrasted with love, forgiveness and God’s care as the story comes to a dramatic conclusion.

When God Says Go resembles Daughters of Deliverance, in that it is about a brave,persistent, godly woman who spends her life relieving the suffering of others.  Mother Eliza George, a daughter of American slaves, serves the tribal people of Liberia, rescuing girls from early marriage to old men,  educating them in schools she’s founded, and starting churches with pastors she’s trained.  But that’s just the framework of this true story .  Her marriage to Mr. George — really out of convenience so she could stay in Africa–is just one of the quaint  stories that emerge out her rich and colorful life. At ninety-five she’s still traveling  through the jungle, carried in a hammock by porters, straddling across a log fallen over a  swollen river, to bring the message of God to one more village.

Katharine Bushnell’s story of courage, persistence and faith is told in Daughters of Deliverance.  She spent most of her life exposing  what we call trafficking today— in the streets of Denver and Chicago,  the forests of northern Wisconsin– and later in the  barracks of the British military in India.(see my recent posts for more)

Even old books can be enjoyed — and fortunately they are all on Amazon for your enjoyment.

 

Rooting for another author in the family

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Big day for my family.  My grandson-in-law launched his book, Jesus Journey.  I know the grueling hours this father of three put in.  I couldn’t resist writing him this letter:

Dear Trent,

I know what this day feels like.  The “baby” has been birthed—a relief and yet a bit of emptiness. Didn’t you grow with the people you wrote about, the insights you discovered, the creative challenge every time you sat down at the computer?

 

And you feel so proud of this “baby” but you don’t want to act proud.  Yet in order to get the baby to grow, you have to talk about it – you have to SELL. You almost feel as though you are selling yourself.

 

It looks like you’ve had some encouragement from your publisher. I’ve received  some new ideas about promoting my book, Daughters of Deliverance, myself today.  I’ve wanted to do a Facebook author page, but don’t know how.  I’ve struggled to write faithfully on my blog—and not very meaningfully either.  But we try and God moves the book along because He wants people to read and learn and be blessed.

 

I was encouraged to receive this review just a few days ago from a woman who serves on the board of a well-known and impactful NGO:

 

Just finished reading Daughters of Deliverance and wanted to thank you for sharing the book with me.  It was an incredible story that I had not heard before and of course it was so beautifully written.   The theme of wrestling and listening for what God wants us to do next in life was powerful.

Lorry

 

 

A Pleasant Shock

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I had a pleasant shock today.  Daughters of Deliverance  rated ONE out of Amazon’s  top 100 free Inspirational Fiction books.  There’s still time for you to put Daughters of Deliverance  on your Kindle for  free through January 31. I check those numbers every day and there were days when it didn’t rank at all in the top 100.You can always buy either Kindle or print through Amazon books.

Publishing a book includes leaving yourself open not only to criticism but to undeserved praise.  I’m so thankful for the more than thirty readers who’ve taken the time and made the effort to write a review on Amazon. ( I need more! )

Here’s an example which encourages me to do all I can to see that  The Queen’s Daughters is published September 1,2017.

Although this is historical fiction set in the late 1800’s, the issues are as contemporary as today’s headlines. This is the story of Dr. Kate Bushnell, whose deep and authentic compassion for exploited women is matched only by her unflinching courage in the face of opposition. A good read. I’m eagerly waiting for the sequel, “The Queen’s Daughters”, which will complete the story of this extraordinary life.

I received a review that excited me several days ago which  opens up a whole new readership I hadn’t expected.Since teen-agers are so worldly-wise these days,they would understand  Kate’s passion to release women from sex-slavery.

While I was staying at my grandmothers house, I read your book ” Daughters of Deliverance.” I want you to know that I really like it and I think that you did a really good job writing that book.  I can’t wait for the sequel. Henna, 16 years old. ”

Since teenagers are so worldly-wise these days,they would understand  Kate’s passion to release women from sex-slavery.This  opens up a whole new readership I hadn’t expected.

 

 

 

The book is Launched

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The book is Launched

I have to admit my stomach was churning as I got ready for the launch of Daughters of Deliverance.  My friend Dody helped me put invitations into cubbies here at Wind Crest. Daughter Sheila prepared the door prizes and decorated the tables.  She walked into the Lounge where the Launch party was held, carrying  a large bouquet of Proteas, the South Africa flower– a gift from my children. My son Mark came all the way from New York where he’d been on a business trip to celebrate with me. Two grandsons and their wives slipped in after we’d started, and my niece and her husband came.  About fifty friends from Wind Crest attended.

But what really is a launch party? I’d never had one for my precious books. I finally realized it was a celebration for me.A card I received says it all:

You Worked Hard…REALLY, REALLY HARD…

Put in the hours, battled the frustrations…

Gave of your blood, sweat and tears,

And now finally it all paid off.  Congratulations!

Reviews are slowly coming in on Amazon– which not only make me feel good, but hopefully will encourage you  to buy and read Destined for Royalty.  More about the book and the life of its heroine, Katharine Bushnell, another time.  For now, I just want you to celebrate with me that the ten-year project of research and writing has finally been  reached publication.  You can read more about  Daughters of Deliverance on Amazon’s book page.

 

 

 

 

 

Launch Day at Last

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It seemed it would never come.  Ten years in the making!  Today–December 1,2016– Amazon launched Daughters of Deliverance and the reviews are coming in.

To celebrate I’m having a Launch Party here at Wind Crest, the active retirement community I live in.  You should see my living room.  It’s piled with books, prizes, table decorations.  I’ve even been persuaded to display copies of of my eleven books published over the years– even the little 48-page booklet of youth programs I wrote for Youth Alive in South Africa back in the 70’s. (I think I was almost as awed to hold that little book when it was printed, as I am today.)

I couldn’t fall asleep last night wondering if we have enough cookies and cider for those who come.  Or would only a few people show up? Of course I can depend on my dear family; two of my children and several grandchildren will be here to boost my morale.

Above all this is a celebration, not just of the lovely book that Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas put out for me, but I’m celebrating  God’s faithfulness in nudging me to keep on writing — through loss and change, through slowing down as I inch (oh no, I’m flying) towards 90.I feel that God has privileged me to spend these years studying and developing the character of Katharine Bushnell.  And through her I too have learned to trust Him more and to do all I can to “finish well” as Kate did. (That’s coming next September when Daughters of the Queen will be released.)

 

Down to the wire/almost

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Down to the wire/almost

Twelve days till launch day.  Daughters of Deliverance will become public.

Amazon has already posted it , but no one can buy, or even review it until December 1, 2016. I have a small stash of books in preparation for the launch party on that night. Invitations have been issued, cookies and cider ordered, and door prizes arranged.

A special list of readers have a one-time-read- only-file  in the hopes that they will write a glowing– or even not so glowing– review for Amazon. Evidently Amazon’s algorithms will determine if my book has drawn in enough reviews to give it a boost.

The promo cards arrived from the printer which I’ll use to invite people to the launch party.  You probably won’t be in the vicinity that night to attend , but I shared the card above so you may know how to buy the book for yourself.*

I learned recently that  129,864,880 books have been published in all of modern history according to Google algorithms.  That makes  Daughters of Deliverance the 129,864,881st book to see the light of day. Which may make my contribution to the world’s wealth of literature infinitely small and unimportant, but the value  of Katharine Bushnell’s life and work among mistreated  women has impacted countless lives.

*The book’s description reads:  1886 Kate begins work with women in Hell’s Half Acre, then on to the white-slavery dens in Wisconsin’s brutal lumber camps.  Trusting God, she sends her report to the governor.  Will he listen to the plight of these young women?  Or brand her a liar?

Two books is like having twins in the birth canal

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Two weeks ago I received a contract for the second book in the series about Katharine Bushnell.  Kate, M.D. is a strong, resilient , courageous woman who encountered sex slavery in the nineteenth century and grappled with it as fiercely as a dog with a bone.

In my coming blogs I’ll talk more about Kate and the not-too-distant-in- the-future  publishing date.  But now I want to talk a little about the publishing process.Anyone who has offered a book to a publisher knows you wait — and wait– and wait.  You keep contacting your editor to see that he’s done everything that he can do.  He has.

But you can understand why I was anxious.  I’m 88 year old — even if you turn 88 around it’s still 88.  But like my brother who is 84, he could mistakenly type 48.  This is a great time of life for me. I’m healthy, no metal parts, and still love to write.  Besides that I don’t have to plan meals, cook them, clean the kitchen and flop on the couch too tired to do anything else. Like last night, I ate a light dinner (had a virtual feast in the Bistro at noon) and worked until ten-thirty.

But getting back to waiting.  Boundless (we’ll call book number one that) had been with another publisher for over a year.  In that process they asked would I please rewrite the book.  I did, and still waited– and then they said “no.”

But in the meantime my editor had found another publisher who was interested. So we managed to keep the two in hand– and when the first said no, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas said “yes.”

So after ten years in the process (far too long to use the birth canal idiom) I actually had a contract and an editor who knew how to gently pull the best out of me.  I’ll probably write about that sometime.

My title says “two books,” and yes book two, The Queen’s Daughters, was accepted two weeks ago. And the process begins all over again.

I don’t know many writers, so most people around me aren’t interested in hearing about the publishing process. Writing back cover copy, a synopsis of your book which took ten years in 35 words, how an endnote line has appeared at the top of the last 75 pages of the manuscript and you don’t know how to get rid of it–  maybe you’re interested.

If so, hang in there, and when I get back to writing my blog — sooner than four months like my last one — I’ll tell you more  of what it takes to publish a book.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Honor Killings

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In his New York Times  column recently Nicholas Kristoff tells about Saba, a young woman who was shot in the head by her father.  Why?  Because she had disobeyed him by falling in love and  marrying without her father’s permission.  It is estimated that over 1000 honor killings take place in Pakistan every year, but very few perpetrators are brought to justice. Courageously, Saba attempted to have her father arrested, but . . . .

You’ll meet Saba herself in A Girl in the River,  nominated for the Oscars’ short documentary award.  Kistoff says whether or not it wins the nomination, it is worth viewing.  This travesty against young women must stop. (I confess I didn’t watch the Oscars)

Pakistan is far away and probably doesn’t seem like an issue in this country.  But I just read Hiding in the Light by Rifqa Bary who faced the threat of death because she dared to . . .  become a Christian.  She was able to keep her faith secret for several years, but when her father found out, he threatened to send her to Sri Lanka to marry an old Muslim man, and the local mosque stood by him . In fact, they are still threatening to sue the American family who protected sixteen-year-old Rifqa when she ran away from home.

Whether it’s honor killing, trafficking, limiting education to boys first or  killing new born girls—the treatment of women and girls in many countries calls us to compassion and action.  I’ve spent over five years writing a biographical fiction about Katharine Bushnell, MD, a Christian activist who investigated and exposed the sex trade in the US and India at the end of the nineteenth century. Lighthouse Publishing tells me the book will be released by December 1, 2016.

 

woman and men created equal

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As I finish editing Boundless, the story of Dr. Katharine Bushnell, I’m overwhelmed at the persistence and bravery of this nineteenth century woman. She spent her life exposing sexual slavery and calling on legislators to pass laws to raise the age of consent and outlaw White Slavery (trafficking then.) She was passionate to serve God and to teach about the value He placed on all humanity. The Bible compelled her, at great personal cost, to fight against those who devalued women in her day. And little has changed – I was heart-sick to read about little girls SOLD BY THEIR PARENTS for as little as $10US dollars. Read on. . .

Asia—2014– In Nepal and India, extreme poverty results in malnutrition, disease, illiteracy, and often deep spiritual depravity.
Little value is placed on women and girls in these countries where they are sold into sex slavery by members of their own families for as little as $10 USD, depending on their age and beauty.

They refer to themselves as “the walking dead” for they are without hope. Girls as young as 7 have been sold into slavery. These women and girls are confined in a room called “the cage” where they are beaten, starved, and raped until their will is broken. Then they are forced to service customers to repay their debt–a debt that incurs more in interest than they are paid for their services. those brothels, conditions are filthy and sickness is rampant. Girls who succumb to infection are turned out on the streets to die. (Just like infected girls were turned out of the brothels in the British military cantonments in India in the 1890’s)

Vision Beyond Borders launched its Vision for Women to answer the growing crisis. The safe house they helped fund just 6 months ago is full, and more women are ready to come out of the industry.
Adapted from Mission Network News by Joan Kramer

At least today exposing trafficking does not depend on a lone woman here and there to fight against the evil. The Bible teaches that men and women were created equal in God’s sight, and equal to work side by side: “God created people in his own image; God patterned them after himself; male and female created he them. So God blessed them and told them, ‘Multiply and fill the earth and subdue it. Be masters over the fish and birds and all the animals’ . . . Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was excellent in every way”. Genesis 1: 27-29, 31.